Formatting Charts in Excel

Once you create a chart it's easy to format and enhance your chart using Excel's menus and commands. To change chart style in Excel, simply right-click or double-click on the chart item you want to format to view the formatting options for that item.

Just a few of the chart items you can format are:


Chart Titles, Axis Titles, and Data Labels

TO CHANGE TEXT: To change the title, axis or data label text, click once on the text box to highlight it, then click again to place your cursor within the text box. Note: don't double-click on the title; this will open the formatting box and text cannot be modified there.

TO CHANGE TITLE APPEARANCE: Right-click on the title or data label you want to format and select "Format Chart Tile/Format Axis Title/Format Data Labels", or double-click.

Chart Title:

format chart title

Axis Title:

format chart axis

Data Label:

format chart data labels

From the formatting window you can change text box color and patterns, font style, and text box alignment:

format chart title options


Chart Lines

To change the color or style of chart lines, simply click on the line to highlight it, then right-click to view the formatting options, or double-click on the line:

format chart data series

From the Format Data Series window you can select line colors and styles and show or hide data labels:

format chart data series options


Axis Labels

Right-click the axis labels you want to format and select "Format Axis Title", or double-click:

format chart axis

From the formatting window, you can change label fonts, number formats, label alignment, and axis scale (e.g., change minimum and maximum values on y axis):

format chart axis options


Plot Area / Chart Area

If you are using QI Macros charts in a presentation, you may want to add some color. You may add a background color to the chart by right-clicking in a blank area inside the chart and selecting "Format Plot Area":

format chart plot area

You may also add a background color to the chart area (the area surrounding your chart) by right-clicking in a blank area outside of the chart and selecting Format Chart Area:

From the Format Plot Area or Format Chart Area window, you can select a background color for the chart, chart borders, and fill effects:

format chart plot area options


As you can see, once you run a chart with QI Macros, you can use any of Excel's chart formatting options.

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